Thursday, June 17, 2010
4th of July Cookout- Vegetarian Style
Fourth of July is quickly approaching. This is a time when many enjoy a holiday cookout. Whether you’re expecting vegetarian guests, you’ve just became vegetarian yourself, or you’d just like to add more meatless recipes to give some variety to your cookout menu, there are all kind of ways to prepare meatless options.
A clean and well lubricated grill is important for vegetarian style cookouts. This is because vegetarian foods are more fragile than meat and do not contain as much fat. You would not want your veggies sticking to the grill.
Traditionally, vegetables have been considered a side dish in most meals, but at a cookout they can take center stage as the entrée. Almost any kind of vegetable is great for grilling.
Complement your meal by serving them over pasta, rice or polenta. You can also make them into extraordinary sandwiches with a soy-based cheese and some freshly baked rolls or bread.
Cut the vegetables lengthwise into thin slices in the case of zucchini and eggplant, or into thick rings, in the case of onions, tomatoes and peppers. If you'd rather have your veggies in handy bite-size pieces for serving with pasta and the like, try using a special pan for the grill with small holes that keep the veggies from falling through the grill and being lost. And probably the easiest way to grill vegetables on the grill is shish-ka-bob style!
A veggie shish-ka-bob recipe that I came up with is arranged by putting a slice of yellow bell pepper, mushroom, chunk of potato, slice of onion, slice of carrot, slice of red bell pepper, slice of jalapeno, chunk of pineapple, chunk of potato, mushroom, slice of onion, slice of carrot, chuck of pineapple, slice of green bell pepper, slice of jalapeno. I then brush on a thin coat of honey, sprinkle on pepper spices and roast on the grill.
Don’t forget to balance out those grilled vegetables with some fresh fruit salads, perfectly chilled and juicy. Watermelon, strawberries, grapes, and citrus fruits all complement one another well in a delightful fruit salad prepared with non-dairy whipped cream.
Also use fruits to experiment with some fun smoothies and slushies for the kids – they’re fun and better for them than sugary sodas.